Showing posts with label cats. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cats. Show all posts

Oct 30, 2017

Rest in Peace, Ms Chinger

It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of the great matriarch of our kitty clan, Ms Chinger.  Our very own mother of the multititudes was taken from us on Sunday afternoon after a brief illness. She will be fondly remembered for her cantankerousness, fearlessness, bravery, badassery, and love. 

Last Thursday night Ms Chinger suddenly took a turn for the worse. What we thought was just a mild case of the sniffles careened into severe vomiting, diarrhea, a sudden drop in body temperature, jaundice, and a marked lack of appetite. All the vets' clinics were closed in our district until Sunday so we had to improvise. We gave her the standard SC and IV fluids and an IM dose of antibiotics to see if we could revive her or at least stabilize her until we could get to a vet. Above you see Bibi's jugaadi (makeshift) hydration station. A window over a comfy sofa or chair makes a great IV bag hanger.

On Sunday we took Ms Chinger across town to the Himalayan Animal Rescue Trust (HART) when they opened fearing the worst as she was not improving. Her temperature had dropped and she had become unresponsive. The vet determined that Ms Chinger was suffering severe kidney failure that was not treatable. We choose to have her euthanized rather than have her endure a slow and painful death.

Here's one of the last photos of her in good health from last week. Ms Chinger and her son the Baacha Khan are accosting a baby snake. The snake lost. The Baacha Khan was bored after about three minutes with the snake, Ms Chinger pursued it for about 20 minutes before snapping it in two. Despite her diminutive size Ms Chinger was not afraid of anything. Dogs, buffaloes, snakes, crows, loud noises- nothing fazed this cat! I've seen her run underneath buffaloes, smack snakes in the face, and even swat dogs around.

Ms Chinger is yelling at me here, "It's time for LUNCH!!!" in all her crabby glory. Regardless of her myriad health problems over the years she loved to eat. She never missed a meal! It was amazing how much buffalo meat she could eat- more than our other two cats combined. Smoked chicken breast was her favorite food. She was also very vocal. If the water dish was empty, a meal was late in coming, or she needed the door opened you would be told LOUDLY.

Ms Chinger came to us in the most peculiar way. Two giggling little girls tossed her over our front gate when she was a kitten then ran away. Cats are considered bad luck in Nepal, black cats especially so. Little Chinger was so small I wondered if she'd even been weaned when I found her mewing in the driveway. Her hair was missing on her tail and nose due to some nasty mange-like skin infection. Her scaly and bald nose and tail made her look more like a rat than a cat so we named her "Ratty," or "Chinger" in Nepali.

Little Chinger allowed me to put medicine on her nose and tail and soon she was healed. She ate like a champ even though she was barely bigger than the palm of my hand. At about 8 months of age she went into heat for he first time. I explained to the Sheikh that we needed to get her spayed or she'd start crank out babies nonstop. The Sheikh did not believe me. Responsible pet keeping and care is not yet  popular in South Asia.

And so Ms Chinger cranked out litters in rapid succession. We had kittens up the wazoo. The kittens had kittens. The neighbor complained about cats coming into their houses. The hospital complained that cats were coming into patients' rooms! Ms Chinger herself routinely got stuck upon the neighbors' roof and would yowl until rescued- usually between midnight and 2 AM. I was tired of cleaning 5 litter boxes daily. We called the Himalayan Animal Rescue Trust (HART) but they did not spay cats, only dogs. We begged and pleaded with them to spay our ever growing kitty clan. Finally they had an American doctor visit that would neuter our cats! Our cats were the first ever in our town to be spayed.

Tikka and His Imperial Majesty the Baacha Khan are the only two surviving children of Ms Chinger. There was a distemper-like virus that killed about half of them. I gave three of them to the children of the owners of our local cold store. Some nasty neighbors strangled 5 of her kittens when they were about 4 months old and wandering in a nearby field and threw them in our driveway. 

Here's Ms Chinger in happier times snuggling by the heater with her son and daughter. This was taken last Winter. Ms Chinger was not our first furbaby but was the kitty that had been with us the longest. (We had another black female cat named Gooli but Ms Chinger beat the crap out of her regularly so she ran away.) As mean as Ms Chinger could be to other kitties and varmints she was quite gentle with children and allowed them to handle and pet her quite readily. She loved a good chin scratch too.
Seems kind of fitting that our spooky little black cat should leave us around Hallow's Eve.
Rest in peace, Ms Chinger.

Nov 18, 2016

Shine on, Super Moon

This is  Bibi's attempt at artistically photographing the recent the perigee-syzygy of the Earth–Moon–Sun system. According to some folks the pull of this close brush with the moon is affecting all our brains as well as causing earthquakes. Who knows? Everything's been so nutty lately maybe they're right.

And here's the last of this year's moonflowers in keeping with today's lunar theme. I still am amazed every time they open. It looks like someone ironed those perfect pleats in those gloriously huge eight inch blossoms.

These are our resident lunatics having a love-in of sorts. Mama Chinger is looking quite content atop her daughter Tikka on the bottom left and His Imperial Majesty the Baacha Khan on the bottom right.

Box + Cats = Bliss.

Yes, this is the way HIM the Baacha Khan sleeps. So much for regal mien, eh?

And lastly, HIM the Baacha Khan decided to try on the gardener's backpack. Something about HIM's expression reminds me of Ben Stiller in Zoolander. FIERCE.

That's all the lunacy going around here up at the Himalayan Hovel. Modi's ill thought out demonetisation is wreaking havoc across the subcontinent RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE PEAK TOURIST SEASON. I'm not even daring to think about what's next in this wacky world.

Apr 21, 2016

Our Ms Chinger

Introducing the grand matriarch of our kitty clan & my sole photography assistant-

 Ms Chinger. 

"Chinger" means ratty or rodent-like in Hindi and Nepali. When Ms Chinger was tossed as a tiny kitten over our compound wall by some kids ten years ago she looked very ratty indeed. Small enough to fit in the palm of my hand, poor little Ms Chinger also suffered a skin infection which caused all the fur on her tail to fall off. She looked very rodent like as a kitten with her tiny black furry body and a long white scaly tail. Despite being the smallest and rattiest of our kitties she has a heart like a lion and can easily eat more than her weight in chicken. Nothing scares this little grand dame, despite her petite size I've seen her smack street dogs in the face with her paw and tease huge water buffaloes by running through their legs.

Here you can see Ms Chinger at work as my photography assistant. I'm getting ready to do a food shoot in my high tech ultra modern studio which also happens to be the patio table with one of my kurtis draped over it. As I adjust the patio umbrella or "natural lighting" as we say in the photography biz, Ms Chinger is assisting with draping the background.

Now Ms Chinger has decided she needs to freshen up a bit. Or take a full spit bath in the middle of the photo shoot. She has the entire yard to do this in but no, here is where she must bathe.

Ms Chinger has always been very chatty and expressive. She has a peculiarly grating whine that sounds like she's perpetually annoyed rather than any sort of typical kitty "meow."

Ms Chinger's lifelong mantra seems to be "SCREW YOU!" Which is most likely what she's saying here.

They say actions speak louder than words. This definitely seems to be the case here. I'm getting the hint that Ms Chinger really doesn't think there should be any taking of photographs at this location and vegetarian dishes should not be allowed to exist. Looks like it's time for a clean shirt, new shooting locale, a fresh plate of food, and a less opinionated photography assistant.


An interesting aside:
I have been notified that I have been nominated for the "Best Food Blog"  AND "Best New Blog" awards on the  nepaliaustralian blog so get on over there and vote for my blog if you choose at:

Be sure to check out all the other amazing blogs in all the different categories and vote for all your favorites!!! Winners will be announced in May.
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